YEREVAN — Armenia announced on Thursday plans to jointly develop and produce weapons with Greece, one of its closest Western partners.
The Armenian government approved a draft Greek-Armenian agreement on bilateral “military-technical cooperation” which is due to be signed soon.
A government statement said the agreement calls for mutual research on and transfer of defense technology as well as the creation of Greek-Armenian joint ventures that will manufacture military equipment and ammunition. It did not specify what type of weapons will be produced and where.
According to the statement, the two sides will also train military personnel and repair military hardware imported from “third countries.” These joint activities will be coordinated by a commission to be set up by the Greek and Armenian militaries.
Greece has trained hundreds of Armenian officers at its military academies since the 1990s but is not known to have supplied any heavy weaponry to the South Caucasus country so far. Athens and Yerevan appear to have explored the possibility of closer military ties in recent years.
A Greek delegation headed by Deputy Defense Minister Nikolaos Chardalias visited Armenia in June 2022 for talks with Armenian military officials. The Armenian Defense Ministry reported at the time that they discussed “developing cooperation in the military-technical sphere” in line with the “warm, friendly relations between the two countries.” It said regional security was also on the agenda of the talks.
Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias visited Yerevan in September 2022 in the wake of Azerbaijan’s offensive military operations at the border with Armenia. “I am here to express our solidarity with the Armenian government and the Armenian people,” Dendias said after talks with his Armenian counterpart Ararat Mirzoyan.
Greece and Armenia have also been seeking closer cooperation in a trilateral format involving Cyprus. Armenian, Cypriot and Greek officials held “defense consultations” in Cyprus in July this year.